Princeton Review GMAT Review (For 2022 Prep)

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Passing the GMAT and getting accepted to one of the best business schools is not easy.

 

To get into one of the top 30 MBA programs in the US, you’d need a minimum score of 680, and a GPA of 3.5. And then, the acceptance rate still hovers somewhere around only 20%.

That’s why many students decide to take advantage of the GMAT prep courses provided by the Princeton Review. I can honestly say that the course delivers on its promise and will definitely help you boost your score.

In this review, you’ll find all the necessary information about its effectiveness, features, pricing, and how it stacks up against the competition.

 

At this point The Princeton Review offers three options (check for discounts):

 

1. The live-online Fundamentals GMAT course with 27 hours of instruction

2. The less expensive self-paced course with 10.5 hours of live Q&A sessions

3. The most popular GMAT 700+ Prep Course with 47 hours of instruction

 

But which one is better and are they fully comprehensive? Let’s find out.

Related content: The 4 best GMAT prep courses to take

 

Table of contents:

  1. Types of GMAT prep courses by the Princeton Review and which one to pick
  2. The pricing of the GMAT courses
  3. Top features of the TPR GMAT courses
  4. Pros and cons of the GMAT prep from the Princeton Review
  5. What’s included in the GMAT prep books?
  6. Princeton Review GMAT prep course alternatives
  7. Conclusion

 

the princeton review logo in a coffee cup

 

Types of GMAT prep courses by the Princeton Review and which one to pick

 

#1: Fundamentals GMAT Course

 

This is the most popular course option and actually one of the most highly recommended. Yes, it’s a bit pricey as you’ll need to pay around $1299 for it (you can check the current prices here). But there’s a saying in the GMAT prep community – don’t be penny wise and pound foolish.

 

Guarantees Higher GMAT Score
Princeton Review GMAT
$1,299 (Price may change without prior notice)

Includes 27 hours live of live instruction, 10 full-length practice tests, 61 online drills, interactive video lessons, GMAT explanation sessions, and more.

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It’s much better to invest in a comprehensive course and get the score you want on your first try than to retake the exam and pay another $250 for your next try.

This course is the best option from TPR because it includes 27 hours of live instruction and interaction with other students. This kind of learning environment creates the right kind of “vibe” where you can actually absorb the knowledge much easier.

It’s all about doing the work “as a team” that will help you to see the problems from different angles and learn how to solve them.

Here you’ll get 27 hours of instruction (either in-class or live-online) in a group of 6-15 students. Actually, the bigger the class the better. If you decide to sign-up, decide that you’re going to speak up and interact as much as possible.

The “spoon-feeding” approach to learning is the least effective, and that’s why you need to ask questions and be engaged if you want to get the most out of this course.

There’s one class each week, and each one is 3 hours long. In total, the live course lasts for around 3 months, but you’ll get access to all the materials for 4 months.

That’s great because the live classes will give you a good foundation for understanding the GMAT concepts. And then you’ll still have one month to crunch through the full-length tests and adaptive online drills. (You’ll get 10 full-length computer-adaptive tests in total.)

The classes are always scheduled for the late afternoon during the workweek or Saturdays, so they won’t interfere with your schedule. But remember, the course itself is not enough. You should be prepared to put in 2 hours of self-study each workday and 4 hours each Saturday from 3-4 months leading up to the test.

 

Who is this course for?

 

 

Prep course highlights: This is the top GMAT prep course offered by the Princeton Review. It gives you 27 hours of live instruction spread over 3 months. It’s the most comprehensive prep option designed to give you everything you need to feel confident before the test and score well above 700. But it’s always good to check supplemental prep materials (PowerScore GMAT Bible, and the GMAT Official Guide).

 

#2: GMAT Self-Paced Course

 

This option is ideal not only for those who can only afford a GMAT prep course on a shoestring budget, but also for those who cannot devote time to a regimented schedule. Perhaps you need to keep a full-time job to support yourself or your family, but are still aiming to earn that MBA to revamp your career course and work your way up the top echelon of the corporate ladder. Well, with the self-paced course, everything is still possible.

 

Study at Your Own Pace & Time
Princeton Review GMAT Self-Paced
$699 (Price may change without prior notice)

Includes 83 adaptive drills of 3000 questions, 10 full-length practice tests, on-the-go access to video lessons, The latest edition of The GMAT Official Guide, e-book edition, and more.

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Here, for around $699 you’ll get access to all three modules (quantitative, verbal, and integrated reasoning). If you want, you can pick the modules separately (at $299 each), but it’s much better to take the comprehensive option as it gives you more value for the money.

On the plus side, you can study at your own pace at your own time using your privileged access to numerous adaptive video-on-demand lessons. This comprehensive course is designed with an exclusive algorithm, subject-specific online tools, and live interactive GMAT explanation sessions for Quantitative, Verbal and Integrated Reasoning modules. You will also be afforded access to GMAT experts as needed.

While this program doesn’t guarantees a specific attainable score (like the GMAT 700+ Course), it still comes with an assurance to help you score higher or you’ll get a refund. They even offer to let you repeat the course for free if you are not satisfied with the program. These guarantees, of course, are subject to some reasonable guidelines.

But the main strength of this option lies in the self-prep materials. These include 10 full-length computer adaptive practice tests, 100+ video lessons, 91+ quick review lessons, 83+ GMAT adaptive drills with 3000+ questions, and the GMAC Official Guide.

It’s recommended that you complete all the practice tests before you attempt the real exam. They’re all computer-adaptive and Princeton Review is really good at creating a genuine testing experience. It’s actually similar to what you’ll see on the real test.

The drills are also great. After completing them, you’ll see how’s your score on each section and then focus on areas with the highest potential score-yield.

Overall, it’s a nice little course, similar to what you would get from Magoosh or The Economist. But here you have the added bonus of getting access to GMAT experts as needed. All of that, plus the neat online dashboard makes it a good prep option.

 

Who is this course for?

 

 

Prep course highlights: This is like the comprehensive live GMAT course but in a “mini” version. It gives you all the self-prep materials, but the live interaction with GMAT experts is available only when needed unlike with the flagship course. Instead, you get access to on-the-go adaptive video lessons anytime you want within the agreed period. Plus, you also get access to live GMAT explanation sessions that cover all three essential modules.

 

#3: GMAT 700+ Course

 

This course is very popular for those who wouldn’t settle for less than getting in the best MBA programs available. This one costs just $300 more than the Fundamentals course, but the extras are staggering. For starters, it offers 20 more hours of instruction from GMAT experts, this alone in my opinion, more than justifies the price difference (you can check the current prices here). But then again, the 700+ guaranteed score really takes the cake. 

 

Help You Get In the Top 25 MBA Programs
The Princeton Review GMAT 700 Score Guaranteed
$1,599 (Price may change without prior notice)

Includes 47+ hours of instructions from GMAT experts, 4400+ GMAT-style practice questions, a ton of interactive video lessons and adaptive drills, and more.

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Scoring more than 700 points in GMAT not only significantly increases your chances in getting in the top 25 MBA programs in the U.S. but it might also determine your future salary. Studies suggests that students who graduate from top MBA programs tend to get at least 40% higher salary than those who came from other full-time programs. You don’t need to be a genius to figure out that it’s a great return of investment (ROI), so to speak.

Besides getting the standard 27 hours of live instruction that the Fundamental course offers, you will likewise benefit from 10+ hours of focused instruction on advanced GMAT questions, as well as 10+ hours of verbal and math explanation sessions. On top of that, you will also get access to numerous interactive video lessons and adaptive drills to help you prepare for the big exam. You will also get a GMAT official guide book bundle with this course. 

Pretty much everything the GMAT Fundamental course has to offer is available in this course, plus you get access to more intensive test preparation materials and exclusive score-raising contents. This in turn, will help you achieve or even exceed the score guaranteed in this program, which could translate to a brighter financial future in your horizon.

The course lasts for 3 months and they offer several class schedule options for your convenience. You can check the details here.

 

Who is this course for?

 

 

Prep course highlights: This is the top-tiered GMAT prep course The Princeton Review has to offer. It gives you a total of 47+ hours of live instruction spread over 3 months, 20 of which are on specialized subjects and strategies. The course guarantees that you will score 700 points or higher on the GMAT, thus increasing your chances in getting in to the top 25 MBA programs, and a more lucrative future white-collar career.

 

 

The pricing of the GMAT courses

 

princeton review pricing

 

The pricing of the TPR’s GMAT courses is quite similar to what you would get from other test prep companies.

The comprehensive live-online course is $1299, the self-prep course with all the modules included is $699, and the GMAT 700+ Course comes with a $1,599 tag price. That’s pretty reasonable for courses that give you many hours of live interaction along with premium study materials.

All the fees for the courses have to be paid upfront unless you decide on the “private tutoring” option which allows you to spread the payments over a few months.

 

There are two private tutoring options:

 

 

These tutoring packages are fine, but I still think that the main live-online course with 27 hours of instruction for $1399 is the top option to pick.

 

Here’s a quick comparison between the prices of the popular GMAT courses:

 

Princeton Review (live-online) Kaplan (live-online) Magoosh (self-paced) The Economist Tutor (self-paced) Manhattan Prep (self-paced) Exam Pal (self-paced)
$1299 – you can get $200 off with a coupon code $1449 $249 $899 $549 $440

 

Top features of the TPR GMAT courses

 

The two popular prep courses come with a variety of different features. But sometimes it’s easy to get confused and miss out on some important elements of the offer.

 

Here are all of the top features of the courses at a glance:

 

Princeton Review GMAT Fundamental Princeton Review Connect “Hybrid” Self-Paced GMAT Course
Price Check the price here (discounts available) Check the price here (discounts available)
Overall rating 9/10 8/10
Live classroom time 27 hours of live instruction spread over 9 sessions Access to live interactive GMAT explanation sessions
Books 3 textbooks (in-class, verbal, quant) GMAC Official Guide
Full-length practice tests 10 computer adaptive practice tests 10 computer adaptive practice tests
Practice questions 4000+ 4000+
Mobile app Yes Yes
Length of online access 4 months 4 months
On-demand video lessons Yes, 100+ video-based lessons Yes, 100+ video-based lessons
Score improvement guarantee Yes, a higher score and 100% satisfaction guarantee Yes, a higher score and 100% satisfaction guarantee
Student portal / GMAT forum Yes Yes
Access to instructor outside of class Yes, email assistance Yes, email assistance
Reports and analytics Yes Yes
GMAT Essay Feedback Yes, unlimited markings Yes, unlimited markings

 

Important note: The full-length GMATs you’ll get from the Princeton Review (and other prep companies for that matter) aren’t really great at predicting your final score on the exam. The algorithms always differ a bit, and even the “official” materials from GMAC are prone to change and small errors. So treat the score you get on practice tests, as a ballpark figure, and not as something to take for granted.

 

Pros and cons of the GMAT prep from the Princeton Review

 

princeton review pros and cons

 

It’s hard to find a course that would satisfy all your needs. It’s great to know about the advantages, as well as the disadvantages of moving forward with TPR. In general, pros outweigh the cons, but take a look for yourself:

 

Pros:

 

1. Lots of live-instruction time in small to medium groups

 

27 hours of interactive instruction is a lot, especially for just a little bit over $1000. The next course with a similar amount of study time is the one from Kaplan, but it’s around $400 more expensive.

Studying with a teacher and other engaged students is one of the best ways to boost your score beyond the 700 point range. Just remember to prepare some of your questions in advance, and be ready to get active in the class. That’s how you get the most benefit out of the experience.

 

2. A score-improvement guarantee

 

It’s not like your dream score is going to be guaranteed no matter what. But the basic guarantee from Princeton Review is good insurance overall.

First, if you don’t improve your score on the real exam (compared to your previous score or the practice test), you’re eligible to get your money back. Second, if you’re not 100% satisfied with the course, you can repeat it at no extra cost.

 

3. GMAT “Hard Math” 700+ workshops

 

The “hard math” workshops come as a bonus with the “ultimate” live course. They’re perfect for students who are aiming to get into one of the top 20 b-schools in the country, or people who need extra math practice.

The workshops include 2,5 hours of live sessions, dealing with particularly hard math questions, 300+ practice questions, 18 drills, and 12 time-management drills that will help you with pacing.

 

4. 10 Full-length practice tests

 

This is more practice tests than you would get with any other company. Other prep options in the market give you 2 to 6 practice tests, but definitely not 10. Each full GMAT is around 4 hours in length, so that’s around 40 hours of practice you’re getting here.

It’s important that you complete as many of these tests as possible because will boost your score the most. After each one, you’ll see exactly how you performed on each section and measure your improvement over time.

 

5. Feedback on your GMAT essay

 

That’s another cool feature that you won’t get almost anywhere else. The analytical writing assessment (AWA) is important and it’s graded on a scale of 0-6. This section of the test is particularly difficult for non-native English speakers.

With the TPR courses, you can submit your essays and receive detailed feedback from a GMAT expert within 3-5 business days. You’ll receive a score, plus instructions that will let you improve your writing skills.

 

6. Fantastic video explanations for each of the questions

 

The video lessons are built in an impressive way and connected to the drills. For example, if you pick the wrong answer on a practice question, you’ll be able to watch a video about that given concept, and understand exactly how to approach it. This will allow you to understand the core concepts at a much deeper level.

 

Cons:

 

1. Lack of a great mobile study app

 

Princeton Review is a big company and you would expect a great mobile app from their side. Unfortunately, as of today, this is not the case. The mobile app only allows you to check your performance reports, along with schedules for your next classes, but no more than that. To remedy this shortcoming, I suggest you download one of the free GMAT prep apps like the ones from Ready4 GMAT or Magoosh. These are great if you like to practice a bit while on the go.

 

princeton review mobile app screenshot

 

2. Sometimes an uneven quality of live instruction

 

Instructors hired by the Princeton Review all scored in the 95th percentile (or higher) on the GMAT. At a glance, this makes them qualified to teach the best strategies for the test.

But sometimes they still lack sufficient experience to be able to impart this knowledge onto you. Fortunately, if you find you’re not satisfied with the level of instruction, you can always ask to join another group.

 

What’s included in the GMAT prep books?

 

All courses from the Princeton Review come with an “Official GMAT Guide” in an e-book version. If you want to grab the book on your own, you’d need to pay $49 for it, but here you get it as a part of the course.

The book contains “retired” questions from past GMATs as well as over 130 new questions with detailed explanations. It’s a great supplement to the full course.

 

Also, with the live-online course, you’ll get three other prep books. These include:

 

These books are designed to supplement your study efforts and give you extra materials when it’s time to study on your own.

 

princeton review gmat prep books

 

Princeton Review GMAT prep course alternatives

 

Helping students with business school applications is a lucrative business. That’s why many GMAT prep companies mushroomed around the world. There are a few viable alternatives to the course offered by Princeton Review.

You may try your luck with self-prep options from companies like Magoosh or The Economist GMAT Tutor. The first one is really affordable ($249) and offers a fantastic app you can use to complete practice questions on the go.

That’s an advantage over the TPR which doesn’t really rely on mobile learning yet. The course from The Economist is more expensive (there are three different pricing tiers), and it comes with a nice performance-based guarantee.

Then there’s always the GMAT course from Kaplan if you’re looking for another live-online or in-person option. But if you compare the features, you’ll find that the course from TPR is more user-friendly and offers more materials.

All in all, it’s always better to invest in a live course, and perhaps use self-prep materials as a supplement. The “live vibe” you’ll get from interaction will help you remember things better and tackle difficult questions more easily.

 

Related content: The 4 Best GMAT Prep Courses To Take

 

Conclusion

 

There are many amazing GMAT prep options available on the market right now. It’s good to take advantage of the course offered by Princeton Review, as long as you pick the live-online or in-person options. Spending lots of time interacting with a teacher and other students is definitely one of the best ways to boost your score.

And don’t rely only on the TPR’s materials when going through your prep. It’s best to attack the questions from many different angles to maximize your chances of success. Also, don’t hope that a course will solve all of your problems. In the end, it’s all about your level of self-discipline and the amount of time you’re willing to put in that matter.

Rafal Reyzer

Hey there, welcome to my blog! I'm a full-time blogger, educator, digital marketer, freelancer, editor and content manager. I started RafalReyzer.com to provide you with great tools and strategies you can use to achieve freedom from 9-5 through online creativity. My site is a one-stop-shop for writers, bloggers, publishers, content enthusiasts and freelancers who want to be independent, earn more money and create beautiful things. Feel free to check my archive containing over 500 articles and reach out if you need anything. Ah yes, and stay awesome!